Loading...

Media is loading
 

Start Date

April 2021

Document Type

Oral Presentation

Department

English

Faculty Mentor

Eve Raimon, PhD

Keywords

Atlantic Black Box, Slave Trade, Maine, New England, Ship News, Easter Argus, 1820 Ship News, Archival Project, Slavery, Public History, Raimon, USM English, Maine Slave Trade, New England Slave Trade

Abstract

Last semester, Fall 2020, in Professor Eve Raimon’s seminar on Slavery and Public History, we became citizen historians. Meadow Dibble, a scholar at Brown University, visited our class and invited us to be a part of the Atlantic Black Box archival project -- a project aimed at uncovering the history of New England’s involvement in the slave trade. We were each given an excerpt from the Portland Eastern Argus newspaper that was published in 1820 -- the year Maine became a state. Our task was to look at the “Ship News” section of the newspaper and enter important data into a spreadsheet. We logged the types of vessels traveling to and from Maine ports, where those vessels were departing to and arriving from, the cargo aboard the vessels, the captains of the vessels, and other details about vessel activity. Our findings suggest that, in the year 1820, twelve years after the importation of enslaved people into the United States became illegal, many Maine vessels were involved in the slave trade. Much like an airplane’s black box that records flight data and can be recovered after an airplane accident to figure out what went wrong, the “Ship News” section of the Eastern Argus Newspaper, combined with the historical knowledge on New England that we gained throughout the seminar, served as our black box in revealing the complex, unspoken history of our state’s ties to slavery. As senior English students, the research we took part in was a great end to our undergraduate experience and we are eager to add our research to the Digital Commons.

TM2021_Toomey-J_transcript.txt (10 kB)
Uncovering Maine's Ties to the Slave Trade: Assisting the Atlantic Black Box Project - transcript

Open Access?

1

Share

COinS
 
Apr 30th, 12:00 AM

Uncovering Maine's Ties to the Slave Trade: Assisting the Atlantic Black Box Project

Last semester, Fall 2020, in Professor Eve Raimon’s seminar on Slavery and Public History, we became citizen historians. Meadow Dibble, a scholar at Brown University, visited our class and invited us to be a part of the Atlantic Black Box archival project -- a project aimed at uncovering the history of New England’s involvement in the slave trade. We were each given an excerpt from the Portland Eastern Argus newspaper that was published in 1820 -- the year Maine became a state. Our task was to look at the “Ship News” section of the newspaper and enter important data into a spreadsheet. We logged the types of vessels traveling to and from Maine ports, where those vessels were departing to and arriving from, the cargo aboard the vessels, the captains of the vessels, and other details about vessel activity. Our findings suggest that, in the year 1820, twelve years after the importation of enslaved people into the United States became illegal, many Maine vessels were involved in the slave trade. Much like an airplane’s black box that records flight data and can be recovered after an airplane accident to figure out what went wrong, the “Ship News” section of the Eastern Argus Newspaper, combined with the historical knowledge on New England that we gained throughout the seminar, served as our black box in revealing the complex, unspoken history of our state’s ties to slavery. As senior English students, the research we took part in was a great end to our undergraduate experience and we are eager to add our research to the Digital Commons.

blog comments powered by Disqus